What is Theravada Practice
1. Where can I find basic information about Buddhism ?:
You can find an introduction to Buddhism on this page under Basic Knowledge.
2. What is Theravāda ?: a
Theravāda Buddhism is the school of original Buddhism, the school of the elders (Theras) who the
Really and authentically reproduce the teachings of the Buddha. This school focuses on an authentic, culture-independent and timeless form of representation of Buddhism. Essential sources for the development of knowledge are the practice of knowledge through personal experience and the teachings of the Buddha, which are faithfully reproduced in the Palikanon. The teaching serves as a guide on one's own path to self-liberation.
Theravada is the predominant religion in continental South-East Asia (Thailand, Myanmar / Burma, Cambodia and Laos) and Sri Lanka. Today there are around 100 million Theravada Buddhists worldwide. In the last few centuries Theravada Buddhism has also started to find its way into the West.
More information on Theravada Buddhism:
- Theravada flyer as PDF
- Schools of Buddhism
- The Palikanon - the original teaching of the Buddha (Wikipedia)
- Wickipedia Theravada (Wikipedia)
- Theravada glossary with explanations and explanations of terms
3. Is Theravāda a monk Buddhism ?:
The Theravada school includes "all" practitioners who wish to follow the Buddha's path. Depending on the individual conditions, there are two fundamentally different models and forms of practice. This includes:
All practitioners can have liberation.
4. What is the common denominator of schools ?:
The common core of all Buddhist schools are the Four Noble Truths. They can also be found in the cross-tradition Buddhist creed of the Buddhists in Germany. You can find more information under Goals and Confession or on the main page of the DBU.
5. How can I get updated information on important Theravāda events ?:
There are various Theravāda events in German-speaking countries. You can search for Theravāda events via the event database on the DBU main page using the selection criteria "Theravāda".
6. How can I get information about the current trends in Theravāda Buddhism ?:
Here you can subscribe to the Theravāda newsletter. The Theravāda newsletter provides information on current developments. The newsletter reports on events, lectures, study programs, practical offers for meditation retreats in Germany / abroad, festivals such as B. Versakh celebrations or activities of the Theravāda network in Germany. You can register or unsubscribe from the mailing list yourself.
7. Can I be a Buddhist and a Christian ?:
The decision always rests with the individual. As a Christian, I can also study the teachings of the Buddha, practice meditation and much more. At a certain point it will often become important for people to make a decision. Here you should be honest and ask yourself whether the Christian or the Buddhist path is not the right one for you. However, if you want to go the Buddhist path - as a path of self-liberation - then joining a Buddhist group and tradition is very advisable (see FAQ: How do you become a Buddhist?).
Many Buddhists then decide to leave the church.
1. How do I find a Theravāda group ?:
There are a number of Theravāda groups in German-speaking countries. We have documented some of them in the Theravāda List. You can search for further Theravāda groups that are not included in the present list in the comprehensive group search on the DBU main page using the selection criterion "Theravāda".
2. How do you become a Buddhist ?:
One becomes Buddhist by taking refuge in Buddha, Dhamma and Sangha, engaging in teaching, openly exchanging teaching / practice with other people on the way in a monastery, center or elsewhere and applying the teaching repeatedly in everyday life or practiced and thereby makes progress on the path of liberation up to liberation (arahatship).
1) Taking refuge in the Buddha, dhamma and sangaha.
- Taking refuge in the Buddha means taking the Buddha as an example for complete liberation.
- Taking refuge in the dhamma (teaching or its liberation teaching) means taking it as the most important guideline or source of inspiration in one's own practical path.
- Taking refuge in the sangha (community of the realized) means: to strive for the goal of becoming "realized (ariya)" with an experience of enlightenment. The realized (ariya) have practical experiences of enlightenment; they have already seen nibbāna and are irreversibly heading for liberation or are already liberated.
Going for refuge can always be done personally by remembering or reflecting on the qualities of Buddha, dhamma and sangha. It can be in a non-public form or solemn form publicly e.g. B. in a monastery or a center together with other practitioners.
2) Dealing with teaching:
But how can taking refuge in Buddha, Dhamma and Sangha be implemented at all? By starting out with the Teaching of the Buddha employ them, apply them yourself and thereby gain practical experience of liberation yourself. Buddha is a guide with what and how he has achieved it. We can learn from his experiences by studying his teaching. In addition, the study of teaching is an essential building block for practice. On the site you will find many tips for studying the original teachings of the Buddha in the form of texts, references, the Theravada glossary under study.
3) Exchange with other people about teaching:
The exchange in a group (see Theravada group list) and the contact to a competent teacher who can help you is very important. Many practitioners who feel like Buddhists also recognize the common commitment of Buddhists in Germany and become individual members of the German Buddhist Union - the umbrella organization of Buddhists in Germany.
4) Application of the teaching in everyday life:
With the fourth truth of his teaching, Buddha has described the practical path, which can be roughly divided into three parts as a gradual path of the development of ethics, concentration and wisdom. It will ETHICS through correct behavior for the benefit of oneself and all living beings in thoughts, words and works, COLLECTION through the development of energy, mindfulness and focus and WISDOM practiced by contemplation and thinking every day in everyday life.
However, not all things can be clarified in everyday life and daily business. An extended and deepened practice is the practice in retreat and the look inward. In a meditation retreat in a monastery abroad (www.retreat-info.de) or here in the west in a seminar house (see group list), further meditation experiences can be gained under the guidance of competent meditation teachers.
3. Where can I best meditate ?:
There are many ways to practice abroad. Very good meditation teachers can be found especially in Burma, Sri Lanka and Thailand. However, before participating in an intensive meditation retreat abroad, it is advisable to gain meditation experience here in Germany. You can find very good addresses in Burma, Sri Lanka and Thailand in Dieter Baltruschat's retreat guide South-East Asia.
1. Meditation opportunities here in Germany
→ Practice groups or seminar houses in Germany
2. Reatreat Guide South East Asia:
→ Retreat Guide South East Asia
1. Which books are recommended for the introduction ?:
There are a number of introductory books in the German-speaking world. The books by Nyanatiloka and Nyanaponika are particularly recommended as an introduction. Both authors are also the translators of Buddhist source texts from the Pali into German. In addition, with a series of introductory books you have created the solid basis for a quick introduction to teaching - with numerous quotations from the primary texts of Buddhist teaching.
Nyanponika. The way to freedom from suffering.
Nyanatiloka: The way to salvation.
Nyanatiloka. The word of the Buddha.
Nyanatiloka. Buddhist dictionary.
1. Which sources apply to Theravāda Buddhism ?:
In Theravāda Buddhism the sources for developing knowledge lie in studying the Buddha's teachings and developing one's own experiences through developing the eightfold path, through ethics, concentration, and insight.
Special emphasis is placed on the tradition of preserving the timeless and culture-independent teaching - as given directly by the Buddha. Buddha himself created an effective and complete liberation practice through his example, his realizations and through his teaching. His teaching should, if it is to remain true to reality, be transmitted true to the original and in its entirety without additions, changes or omissions. This has been achieved up to modern times by holding six councils. The result of the confirmed Buddhist teaching is documented in the Palikanon. It consists of three parts - the rules of the order (Vinaya), the discourses of the Buddha (Sutta Canon) and the systematic teaching (Abhidhamma).
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